Santa Barbara County denies proposal to restart offshore oil production

March 10, 2022

By KAREN VELIE

The Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 on Tuesday to deny a request by ExxonMobil to restart offshore oil wells shut down in 2015 following the worst coastal oil spill in 25 years. Supervisors Bob Nelson and Steve Lavagnino dissented noting the need for oil as the Central Coast transitions to alternative energy sources.

“The reality is: as much as we want that to happen, as much as I have voted for it to happen, it’s not there yet and we have to continue to produce fossil fuels as we transition,” Lavagnino said.

ExxonMobil asked the county board to approve interim trucking routes for the transportation of oil from offshore drilling platforms. In its proposal, ExxonMobil wanted up to 24,820 tanker trucks a year to transport the oil on Highway 101 and State Route 166 for up to seven years or until the damaged pipeline is replaced or repaired.

On May 19, 2015, a pipe belonging to Plains All American ruptured near Goleta, causing approxamtly 140,000 gallons of crude oil to spill. Much of the oil flowed into a culvert and then into a ditch that drains into the ocean.

Supporters of ExonMobil’s proposal said it would create approxamtly 250 jobs and generate $4.5 million a year for Santa Barbara County.

“We disagree with the decision, which disregards our employees, contractors and countless others working in California’s oil and gas industry who depend on these jobs to support their families,” ExxonMobil said in a statement. “ExxonMobil has met all of the requirements for issuance of the permit, which has gone through extensive environmental review and public comment.”

Opponents noted environmental and global warming concerns.

“Exxon’s trucking proposal was a step in the wrong direction on climate and put Californians and our coastal resources in harm’s way from spills, crashes, pollution and fires,” said a statement from the Environmental Affairs Board at University of California, Santa Barbara.


Loading...

23
Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
NorthSide

Well, this is not a big deal. Just buy a Tesla. And if you want to keep driving your fossil fuel based car because you are not wealthy enough to afford a Tesla, don’t worry, there is plenty of oil that we can purchase from Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela. Problem solved.


MysticOne

The solution to not being at the mercy of oil producing nations is to be at the mercy of lithium producing nations (China)? Neither sounds like a good solution to me.


A better short term carbon neutral solution would be what this video shows, and btw, since the 2008 video the US Navy hired the guy in the video to help fuel the fleet and has done so successfully.

https://youtu.be/OebPtG6J-dg


AllAboutTheBenjamins

Aluminum ion batteries. Being worked on and they have coin batteries they just started shipping to customers to test. If it does work it will change the battery game. Charge your phone in a few seconds and your car in 5 minutes. Because made with aluminum instead of lithium they don’t get hot when charging hence the quicker charge times.


Messkit

I don’t agree with you often….well, never….but the Al-Ion battery may just be the answer to many future questions. As soon as they figure out the plating problem, and somewhat severe component erosion problem (all chemical based), the Al-Ion battery will indeed revolutionize E-cars. The best thing is, most any country can produce them, eliminating any trade war due to their inherent cheapness to manufacture.


AllAboutTheBenjamins

Take a look at graphene manufacturing group out of Australia they have been working with Queensland university on this technology. They have their coin (2032) type battery being tested by prospective customers to see if they actually do what they say. Supposed to have 3x energy density and very low toxicity along with the high rate of recharging. Another plus is because there is little to no heat produced the batteries should last thousands of more cycles. The pouch pack manufacturing plant is supposed to be up and going this summer which would be used in everything from laptops to car batteries. Hopefully there will be some news soon about the coin type batteries trial. I think we would agree on many things I just can’t get behind trump he’s only wants what’s best for him(NPD). I will give him one thing he might be the greatest grifter ever. See his new ploy to get people to build him a new plane lol? When you go to the donation page the box is automatically checked for recurring 2500/month donation. But maybe I said too much is email did say he didn’t want people to know.


kevin rise

Santa Barbara past oil spills lead to the formation of the EPA under Richard Nixon because he was so emotionally upset and traumatized by the loss of life and biology.


222bBakerStreetNW

So the point you were trying to make in two repetitive back-to-back posts is we shouldn’t ever drill for oil again in Santa Barbara, because a prior spill caused a Republican President to form the EPA? I thought that the EPA was formed so that there would be greater oversight of oil production and transportation, hence making it safer to drill, produce, and ship oil in Santa Barbara. You are making it sound as if Santa Barbara is less safe for oil production because the EPA was formed. Maybe you would have a valid point if Nixon had banned oil drilling in Santa Barbara. But he didn’t. He formed an agency to ensure future projects would have greater oversight. The EPA wasn’t formed to ban oil and gas production and give you a “see I told you so” defense just because it was formed by a Republican President. The “P” in EPA stands for “protection,” not punishment. If you want an ideology of punishment organized by a bunch of perpetually angry control freaks, well that’s the job of the climate change cults.


kevin rise

Yes, banning all oil sooner vs later including coal is; in the academic and scientific and the real reality of society, a necessity. Or reality will continue to get worse for “the majority of regular poor people on earth whom aren’t brainwashed by TV.” Private business is lazy and can’t be trusted. Gulf spill, Exxon val, oil spill just a few years ago in SB. BP, Exxon, Haliburton are in Africa, south america, everywhere waging fake wars and commiting crimes. Etc. If you went to college, or can read words, climate science is real, even Exxon knows this. Computers are real too, so is gravity. You know how a computer works? I really dont, but they do. Some like to be in denial and just say it’s Jesus, but it’s not. And there’s no proof of Jesus, but there is for climate change. Why can’t you just tell everyone to join heaven’s gate and drink the coolaide vs being in denial or too mean or ignorant to use the internet and Google journal?


kevin rise

Dick Nixon made the EPA, a conservative republican, after seeing an oil spill in, GUESS WHERE!?! Santa Barbara. Ding ding ding. Who owns the oil, Not Us, who makes the prices, A Cartel called OPEC. Who tricks us to thinking we own oil, Ding ding, Politicians. We don’t own it, this isn’t Alaska. To blame this on Liars like Trump or Biden is a joke. The only sane one of the last three presidents was Tricky Dick. Epa equals an oil spill so bad he stood up to his lobbyists for fossil fuels; a Republican! And wanted to save the eco system and believed in climate change and catastrophe made by man.


LeroyMoo

SB County not doing their part for energy independence while the goods keep being trucked in with diesel trucks for their survival. I really don’t want to depend on an Uber and will keep my all-wheel drive gas burner when it’s time to evacuate to save my family and pets. The tree huggers that have no way to charge their Tesla can hunker down like the Ukrainians. Heavens gate cult was much smaller than the CO2 cult.

Rising CO2 has always followed temperature increase. CO2 has never led temps. So, more CO2 is liberated as temps go up or coincidentally humans have added CO2 in a linear rate with temp increase. Conversely, water vapor/humidity in the lower troposphere appears to have led each temperature change. So, are we to believe that human CO2 has compounded wildfire, control burns, volcano and natural release more and can really affect the water vapor blanket of our planet more than cooling towers, above ground irrigation and the liberation of ice with rising sea levels that cover the majority of the planet? The animal gas argument is a joke with natural nitrates decomposing sequestered logs.

30k scientist with only 2% being climatologist or meteorologists doesn’t convince me when I see politicians funded by green power lobbyists. The bought politicians have influenced the CPUC over the last 30 years to allow CA’s electric system to be sabotaged with lack of reliability, weak forestry management and individual cities are thwarting natural gas so that people have no backup or redundant source of energy during a crisis. CA is a black hole of electrical load that has depended on Washington hydro and then Four-Corners nuclear plants. Is our future energy reliance going to be on easily bombed or shelled solar and windfarms or stored energy? The shining example of promoting electric cars to garden tools are more examples of the big joke the green profiteers are doing to CA when everyone clearly knows that the grid can’t handle the additional load as it is being added. All the while, Central Coast Energy compete with 21 other CCAs and the big utilities for Washington and Oregon hydro that their own state green residents want to keep and virtue signal about how great their cult is. Our retail electricity doesn’t need to be 3x higher than it was 20 years ago, but cultism and green cronyism has done that.


derasmus

“Last three presidents…trick dick…” do you mean Richard Nixon? News flash, Nixon wasn’t one of “the last three presidents.”


Myself

Not one of you talking heads thought this through, all your whining about is what you have to pay for a gallon of fuel, where this is killing us is everything else, buy more crap thru amazone, how do you think it gets here, have someone else buy your food and get it to your door, ahhh how does food get to the store, opps go buy gas for your car to go to city hall and whine about some useless thing, ohh how does gas get to the station, all this stuff is brought to you by truck that truck burns diesel, its not electric and never will be in our life time, its 200 miles from LA to here from the DC to the store, a battery truck isn’t going to cut it, so with high fuel prices there goes the prices for our goods.


AllAboutTheBenjamins

We can pump more oil but doesn’t mean we can process it. Most of our refinery’s are setup for heavy crude oil which is Middle East oil for the most part. Most of the crude in the US is called light “sweet” crude oil. Once again there isn’t a shortage of oil and gas it is totally speculative right now. Now if we get to that point then you will see $10+ if you can find it. Our oil producers here could easily sell the oil to our refiners for $60 a barrel and still make a good profit but that will never happen because they are sitting back raking in billions each week. Oil producers are profitable at 35-40/barrel.


Zoiebowie

Bummer. I was going to park my car there and hope they would fill me up with gasoline because that’s how oil production works right?


Jon Tatro

Will these liberals denying the US being able to produce its own oil realize that the oil will be burned regardless of where it comes from. The US oil is produced cleaner than all the other sources of oil from foreign hostile countries. Fools


Michael Stove

The higher prices for oil will curve people’s usage of oil. This lessens the impact of global warming, although we are still totally screwed.


To put it another way, I care more about the long term health of the planet than if you have to drive less in your car or truck.


222bBakerStreetNW

So if it’s really “all about the environment” then why is your old doddering fool of a President begging Saudi Arabia and Venezuela for more oil? It makes no sense. We explore, drill, extract, and refine oil here in the United States far cleaner and efficiently than any other country. So why don’t we ban all exports, and continue to produce a gradually reduced amount here in the U.S.A.? Instead, we increase our dependence for oil on countries that have little to no regard for climate change. Why haven’t we focused on bringing the manufacture of solar panels, wind turbine parts, and batteries for both solar and electric cars back to America? The more we rely upon “green technologies,” the more money we keep throwing at gross polluters like China. China is the worlds leading consumer of coal. For every Chinese wind turbine we erect here in the U.S., for every-other solar panel you slap on your house, China builds more coal-fired power plants to supply electricity to their ever-growing factories. HOW IS IT that a country of 320 million people is going to make any dent in climate change by sending more and more of it’s manufacturing to a country of 1.4 billion people who has done almost nothing to improve the health of its climate nor environment? Now we beg for dirtier oil produced in climate irresponsible countries. In the long run, it would be better for the world’s climate if we just brought the production of wind turbines, solar panels, and gasoline back to countries that can produce them cleaner and more responsibly. Take more and more oil production and manufacturing away from the gross polluters and human rights abusers, and then you might get them to change their ways. Otherwise, you nailing yourself to a cross by being willing to pay more for gasoline doesn’t make a damn bit of difference. Do some research beyond watching CNN or memorizing bumper sticker slogans. My apologies if I offended any of you who worship climate change as the only God you have, but you really need to knock it off with the symbolism over substance.


derasmus

Well said,


Thank you!


MrYan

NIMBY is the rule that prevails.

And our “backyard” just happens to be pristine coastline. A simple cost benefit analysis says the tourism industry has a much larger direct benefit to our local coastal communities than the oil industry on a dollar for dollar basis. So we should protect it.


Exxon extracting oil from this site benefits their shareholders, but not our community at large. Pull every ounce out of the ground and dump it into the oil supply and you won’t reduce the cost of your gas. It is a drop in the bucket on world market. Leaving it in the ground benefits our communities to a greater degree than extacting it would. No left or right to it-just math.


Let Bakersfield and Oildale pump the oil.


Jorge Estrada

When the oil oozes up through the pressure cracks in the ocean bottom, the well pumps will likely be ordered to start pumping and the B of S will have to fund the clean-up they caused.


Rambunctious

Anyone against American energy independence should never receive even one vote…. the evidence for that is upon us…. renewables will come along on their own and in their own time… forcing us off fossil fuels threatens our freedom and prosperity…. stop trying to force a square peg into a round hole…. we need oil… especially now….


Michael Stove

We needed to invest in solar and wind and nuclear back in the 90s and early 2000s when it was clear to scientists that this was happening. What we don’t need now is cheap fossil fuel energy that will speed the destruction of the climate.


Rambunctious

If we ever do get off of fossil fuels it won’t be solar or wind that makes it possible….